The United Macedonian Diaspora (UMD) has welcomed the defeat of Senate Resolution 602, which praised the 2018 Prespa Agreement and the changing of Macedonia’s name. UMD has also expressed delight at the defeat of House Resolution 804 calling on Macedonia to agree to a new name that respects Greece’s demands.
Trajko Papuckoski, the UMD’s U.S. Director welcomed the rejection:
“Scores of meetings conducted, phone calls made, and thousands of letters were sent to Senators and members of the House of Representatives urging non-passage of S. Res. 602 and H. Res. 804 successfully defeating both – an initiative led by the Washington, D.C.-based United Macedonian Diaspora.”
As the Macedonian Parliament currently debates approving constitutional changes to officially change Macedonia’s name, UMD believes the failure of these resolutions will give greater support to those in Macedonia opposing the Prespa Agreement.
S. Res. 602, introduced on August 1, 2018 by Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT) and Senator Ron Johnson (R-WI) and passed within the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on October 1, 2018, met strong opposition from UMD and the Macedonian-American community. S. Res. 602 was misleading, offensive to the Macedonian people, and contrary to longstanding U.S. principles and policies supporting national self-determination. The following document was distributed to the offices of all 100 Senators.
H. Res. 804, introduced on March 22, 2018 by Hellenic Caucus Co-Chair Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney (D-NY), called on Macedonia to agree to a new name that respects Greece’s demands. Maloney in a speech before the United Nations earlier in 2018 stated, “Macedonia was, is, and always will be Greek.” H. Res. 804 received no co-sponsors.
UMD President Metodija A. Koloski said:
“The Macedonian-American community is adamantly opposed to a change of Macedonia’s name, identity, language, history, to appease Greece and to join NATO and the EU. The successful educational advocacy done to defeat both these shameful resolutions is a testament to the growing engaged and concerned Macedonian-American community.”
“Many meetings with members of Congress and respective staff, conducted by Macedonian-American leaders, appreciated hearing our concerns, and were astonished by the blunders made by the Prespa Agreement and the governments of Zaev and Tsipras.”
“I am proud of the UMD family and Macedonian-American community, and we look forward to working with them as we educate the 116th Congress on the importance of our issues.”
The upcoming 5th Macedonian-American Leadership Conference in Miami, Florida on February 8-10, 2019 will be a focal point on U.S.-Macedonia relations and best practices for our leaders.
Register to attend HERE.